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Old 01-04-2008, 03:18 PM   #1
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I want to buy an airstream

Hi ,
I was told by someone that airstreams built upto and including 1971 are better quality and stronger built than airstreams built from 1972 onwards.
IS THIS CORRECT?

I have refitted the insides of 3 1970's airstreams with birchply carcuss frames and lots of nice hardwood trim ect for a company a few years back.
and would now like to go to america and buy one for my self in june.
So just starting to try and find out some info.
Any feed back would be much apeciated
thank you from Duncan ( Portugal)
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Old 01-04-2008, 03:25 PM   #2
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Others will either verify or tell me I'm off base - My understanding is that there were some years in the '80s that were off a bit in terms of quality. I have never heard that '71 was a cut-off. I hope not because I'm trying to sell a great '72 at the moment.
Any year can have issues.
Any year is better than a SOB. (Some other brand/Some other box/Square old box, etc.)
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Old 01-05-2008, 08:49 PM   #3
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The years that the Company named Beatrice owned Airstream there were some problems on the longer models rear bath models.

So decide how long a trailer you want or if you want a wide body or not then choose a floorplan that fits and start your search.

Good luck!
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Old 01-05-2008, 10:09 PM   #4
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Tough question.

In 1969 the body style changed and many of the units (Safari - Trade Wind - Overlander & others) grew one foot longer and they all got a little wider.

In 1971 they moved away from real wood and went to plastics and tambour doors. This was to save weight during the gas shortage years. The plastic and tambour doors are not liked by many people.

In 1974 Grey tanks became standard equipment on all units, I think it was an EPA thing, not sure.

Also in 1974 the rubber in the axles was improved and those axles should have a longer life.

I do not know of any changes made between 71 and 72.
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Old 01-06-2008, 07:51 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Goin camping
The years that the Company named Beatrice owned Airstream there were some problems on the longer models rear bath models.
I can attest to that with our 74 rear bath. On ours, the last inch or so of floor rotted away, causing the frame and bumper to sag slightly. I was able to perform a repair that should last several years before I have to go in and replace the floor. Center bath models are harder to find, but more desirable, especially during the 1970's, from a sag perspective. IF the sag develops, it is easier to correct since you only have to remove some cabinetry and the beds, rather than a slew of plumbing.
Also, welcome to the forums!
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Old 01-06-2008, 08:04 AM   #6
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Thumbs up Welcome...

Don't know much about the 70's AS.

But we love fado....the music

Fate brought you to the Forums.


p.s Fado our PWD comes from the Algarve.
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Old 01-06-2008, 08:29 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Goin camping
The years that the Company named Beatrice owned Airstream there were some problems on the longer models rear bath models.

According to the information on this site, the frame size was reduced during the Beatrice years:
"One of the big changes Beatrice instituted was a reduction of the frame size from 4" or 5" to only 3" including in the 30' or 31' trailers. That design change was, according to some owners, the worst of their design changes and resulted in major frame sagging in the rear."

Shari (Insideout) put togther A handy guide of changes made from 1936 to 1979 in her Matrix.
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Old 01-06-2008, 08:41 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by overlander63
I can attest to that with our 74 rear bath. On ours, the last inch or so of floor rotted away, causing the frame and bumper to sag slightly. I was able to perform a repair that should last several years before I have to go in and replace the floor. Center bath models are harder to find, but more desirable, especially during the 1970's, from a sag perspective. IF the sag develops, it is easier to correct since you only have to remove some cabinetry and the beds, rather than a slew of plumbing.
Also, welcome to the forums!
The rear floor rot that Terry is talking about is generally attributed to the design of the rear bumper. Water would run off of the bumper and into the floor of the rear of the trailer. A seam of vulkem where the bumper meets the body is recommended to prevent this.
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Old 01-07-2008, 03:45 PM   #9
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Thankyou all so much for your knoledgable feedback!
its so good to be part of this forum. I never realised there was so many people , so pasionate about these wonderful trailers.
its been 6 years since i worked on the first trailer( of someone elses) , since then allways wanting one of my own, the time is almost here. cant wait!
Thanks again chow
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